Boys hoops: Baron triggers strong run for Pope John Paul II at Never Forget Classic

POTTSTOWN – JP Baron made a major splash during his junior campaign at Pope John Paul II, helping the Golden Panthers secure their first Pioneer Athletic Conference boys basketball championship since the school’s inaugural 2010-2011 season.
 
Following a scholastic season in which he averaged 11.4 points per game and knocked down 22 three-balls, Baron is continuing his rise above the rim as evidenced by his strong performance at the RomeRuns Never Forget Classic this past weekend at Wyndcroft School in Pottstown.
 
Baron, who had 19 points in a season-ending 43-40 loss to Allentown Central Catholic last March, earned all tournament honors in the multi-school event, triggering a run that carried PJP all the way to Sunday’s semifinal round.
 
Joining PJP at the charity event – staged by RomeRuns and EasternPa Elite to commemorate the 20th anniversary of 9/11 with a portion of the proceeds going to the Wounded Warrior Foundation – were PAC schools Spring-Ford, Owen J. Roberts, Pottstown and Norristown.
 
Muhlenberg, J.P. McCaskey, Reading, Souderton, Devon Prep, West Catholic and eventual champion Phelps School also participated.
 
Joining Baron on the all tournament team were Edwin Suarez (Muhlenberg), IV Pettit (Devon Prep), Ruben Rodriguez (Reading) and Wisler Sanon (Phelps School).
 
Tournament co-directors Dan Hoff, president of EasternPA Elite, and Ross Romanello, RomeRuns owner and recruiting director at EasternPA Elite, felt the event was a slam dunk at the end of a perfect fastbreak.
 
We’d been talking all summer about doing something special to commemorate the 20th anniversary of 9/11,” said Hoff. “We were originally planning on an AAU Tournament, but we decided it might be a good idea to get some of the local high school programs involved, and the coaches pretty much were unanimous that they wanted to play.”
 
Actually, the Never Forget Classic was so well received that Hoff is planning on an encore next year and beyond.
 
We’ve decided to make it an annual event and do it every year moving forward,” Hoff said. “The positive feedback we got from the area coaches and players made it an easy decision to keep it going.”